16 November 2023
At a special event attended by about 60 invited guests yesterday, Bishop Brian Mascord from the Catholic Diocese of Wollongong blessed the new facility and celebrated Mass at St Mary Mackillop Catholic Parish to mark the occasion.
Notre Dame’s Chancellor, The Hon. Christopher Ellison, said the University was committed to providing more opportunities for people living in this rapidly growing part of Sydney to access the benefits of higher education.
“The population growth in this part of Sydney is astonishing, which will only increase with future developments in the area, including the new international airport,” Mr Ellison said.
“As a national university, we believe we are ideally placed to support the Government’s mission to grow access to education in critical skills areas. We also recognise the need to build diversity and increase opportunities to access education and employment across our communities.”
“Just as importantly, this facility provides an opportunity to strengthen the ongoing relationship between Notre Dame, the Diocese of Wollongong, and local Catholic school communities.”
The new facility features a reception area, kitchenette, 40 seat open learning space, and audio-visual equipment to assist with remote learning.
Bishop Mascord said the opening had been a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Mass and to welcome Notre Dame to the Diocese of Wollongong.
“Our vision for Catholic education is to provide high quality centres of learning, where faith is experienced and lived out as an integral part of the student experience,” Bishop Mascord said. “Notre Dame’s new facility will have a transformative effect on our ability to realise this ambition, both during and beyond the K-12 years.”
Catholic Education Diocese of Wollongong Director of Schools, Peter Hill, said the new facilities would provide students, teachers, and Catholic education leaders with the chance to undertake further study and professional development from a campus located right on their doorstep.
“The first physical presence by a Catholic university in the Diocese of Wollongong is an historic moment,” Mr Hill said. “This study centre not only greatly expands the professional learning opportunities for our dedicated Catholic school teachers, but also provides an attractive and accessible path to higher education for our students, many of whom may be the first in their family to attend university.”